Academy boss says a ‘crisis team’ will be in place at this year’s Oscars
Academy chief executive Bill Kramer says that a “crisis team” will be introduced for the first time at this year’s Oscars to prepare for any unanticipated events.
Mr Kramer said the team had run “many scenarios” ahead of the 95th Academy Awards, which is due to take place on March 12 and be hosted by US comedian Jimmy Kimmel.
It comes after unprecedented scenes at last year’s ceremony, which saw actor Will Smith storm the stage and slap presenter Chris Rock.
Smith’s actions were in response to a joke the comedian made about his wife, Jada Pinkett Smith, and the actor was subsequently banned from all Academy events for 10 years.
In an interview with Time magazine, Kramer was asked if any measures had been put in place to mitigate “potential surprises” at this year’s awards.
“Absolutely, and that’s why you want someone like Jimmy (Kimmel) on stage who is used to dealing with live TV: Things don’t always go as planned,” he told Time.
“So you have a host in place who can really pivot and manage those moments.
“But we have a whole crisis team, something we’ve never had before, and many plans in place.
“We’ve run many scenarios. So it is our hope that we will be prepared for anything that we may not anticipate right now but that we’re planning for just in case it does happen.”
It comes after the president of the Academy, Janet Yang, said the organisation’s response to the “unprecedented” Smith incident had been “inadequate”.
Speaking at the annual Oscar Nominees Luncheon earlier this month, Ms Yang said the Academy had learned to be “fully transparent and accountable in our actions”.
“Particularly in times of crisis we must act swiftly and compassionately and decisively for ourselves and for our industry,” she said.
“You should and can expect no less from us going forward.”